I think the defense will improve some. They are not facing a very tough schedule of opposing offenses based on their 2016 performances so that will help. The unit should improve marginally. But it’s too much to ask for dramatic improvement in one year. They need at least one more draft/free agency cycle and a year to get settled in with Manusky and then they have a shot.
There has been speculation that Cousins could get $30 million per year on the open market given the shortage of good quarterbacks. Cousins signing in free agency would likely be a game changer for quarterback salaries even if he falls short of the mark. It would be the beginning of a dramatic shift at the top of quarterback market.
Let’s look at the Redskins three years from now. Who will still be here? Which players will be top performers? Here’s a possible snapshot of the team going into training camp in the year 2020. We’ll look at the offense today and the defense later this week.
The word "deserves" is always a tough one for me, because who deserves $24 million? But based on his age, the system, what he has done the last two years and what he is playing for in the future, then, yes, Cousins deserves to be the highest-paid quarterback in the division.